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Tokyo Summer Olympic qualifier Ian Ho talks growing up Blacksburg

Published: Jun. 23, 2021 at 6:10 PM EDT
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BLACKSBURG, Va. (WDBJ) - Blacksburg native Ian Ho will make his debut in the Tokyo Summer Olympics in a few weeks.

“I was absolutely shocked, too-- I know why my teammates were like, ‘you were so close, we all knew you could do it’. But I mean, I’ve never done it before,” said Ian Ho, a Tokyo Summer Olympics qualifier.

“To really see all of this come together like that, I mean-- no, to answer your question-- no I didn’t see this coming.”

Ian’s journey started in Blacksburg.

“I wouldn’t say I don’t know how old I was. Must have been young, so me and Shawnee swimming, at Ridgewood--- all of these, all these pools in the area with the summer league start out with, with SWAT swimming, which was the name before it got changed to H2okie Aquatics”

He says he remembers his dad waking up at 4:30 in the morning to make breakfast before 5:30 a.m. practice.

“My mom, my sisters who supported me-- I wouldn’t be here without every single coach that I’ve had, SWAT swimming and stroke school, and H2okie Aquatics, Virginia Tech and here in Hong Kong-- as a pro--- any of these coaches and I wouldn’t have done it without all of these people,” said Ian. “I was on the phone with my parents and they say it takes a village, and I think it truly, truly does.”

Ian says for the next few weeks he’ll be training, to be in his best shape he can be for the big day.

After the Olympics, he’ll head back to Tech to finish his Masters and PhD in mechanical engineering.

“It’s great to, I guess, be a part of that part of that legacy now have growing up in Blacksburg-- it’s been-- I wouldn’t have traded it for the world,” Ian said.

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